I want to marry a girl from another nationality and my parents are worried about what people will say. What should I do?

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by Askimam.org

 

I have a question regarding marriage. I am a Bengali male and wish to marry a girl I have gotten to know who is Pakistani. She is a great person and for me and my parents she ticks all the boxes. Her parents are happy with me too. 

However, my family seem to have an issue with 1 thing which is the fact that she’s is Pakistani and people will talk hence they will feel small. They even went as far as saying it’s better for me to marry a “bad” Bengali as it wont be as embarssing as marrying a Pakistani which I find hurtful and wrong.

My parents aren’t racist, it’s just that they are worried that my cousins will “speak” and most of my cousins have done a whole lot worse, so techincally they’ll be hypocrtical if they did speak and make my family feel small. 

Now, what do I do? Can I still marry her? Me and her have no problem with each other and I have no problem with her family. Even her family members are married to non pakistanis. I just want to fulfill half of my deen and get married and live my life. Is it permisabble to marry if my parents reject due to this reason? A reason I believe is petty? 

If I was to marry and move out, will that be haraam or sinful? I don’t wish to marry someone else when I feel I have found everything I need, even to a point she ticks every box for my parents except for that she’s pakistani. By ticking boxes, I mean she’s religious, well educated, good background etc.

Answer

In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.

You have the right to marry the girl you want to, however, you cannot communicate with her as you are not her mahram. If you want to marry her the next steps would be to convince your parents first, out of respect for them, and then propose to the parents of the girl.

The reasons that you have mentioned are indeed petty, however it is the petty reasons that sometimes lead to major discord and disagreement. Marriage is between two families, not just you and her. If there is friction between your parents and her because of this, it will naturally affect you, and your relationship might become strained because of this. As a result, there is certainly a possibility of you falling short of fulfilling the rights of your parents, and that will be sinful.

Our suggestion would be to convey your disagreement to your parents politely. Explain to your parents that would they not prefer to see you happy rather than worry about what somebody might say because you married someone from another nationality.

Seek the help of local scholars or elders in your extended family to help you discuss the issue with your parents. Be patient with them, make dua for them and explain to them that their blessings for this marriage are very dear to you and you want to proceed with their full approval. While winning their hearts now will take effort on your part, Insha-Allah the result will be that your marriage will be blessed and full of goodness [khayr].

And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best

Sohail ibn Arif,
Student Darul Iftaa
Chicago, USA

Checked and Approved by,
Mufti Ebrahim Desai.

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